Election hangover? Race for 2016 begins today

By Stephanie Carson
Public News Service-NC

RALEIGH — After enduring months of campaign ads, North Carolinians are waking up today and learning how the candidates and issues they favored in this midterm fared. But today barely marks a break in the action for political insiders. Jill Hanauer, president and CEO of Project New America, says they’re now ramping up for the 2016 presidential election.

Stephanie Carson | Public News Service-NC  North Carolina's U.S. Senate race encouraged turnout among voters across the state, and set a record when it comes to campaign spending.

Stephanie Carson | Public News Service-NC
North Carolina’s U.S. Senate race encouraged turnout among voters across the state, and set a record when it comes to campaign spending.

“We’re waking up today and wanting to take a nice sigh of relief that it’s over, but it’s not over,” she says. “Politics just started for 2016, the minute the sun rose.”

North Carolina’s new voting law, passed last year, shortened early-voting days in this midterm, eliminated same-day registration and prevented out-of-precinct voting on Election Day. The law is expected to be challenged in court next year, along with its requirement for photo identification, scheduled to take effect in 2016.

North Carolina’s campaign spending in this midterm was higher than any other election in the country for the U.S. Senate race. Hanauer believes this election could be the turning point with campaigns realizing they’re not reaching the key youth vote with their traditional ads.

“The voters of the new America and the changing demographics, they’re watching it on Hulu so they’re not seeing the negative ads – but the conservative, Republican base is seeing it more,” she says.

According to the Sunlight Foundation, $100 million was spent on the race between Senator Kay Hagan and Republican challenger Thom Tillis.

Filed in: Featured News, Latest Headlines, News

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